Janss Steps at UCLA. (Wikimedia Commons)

Surrey mom allegedly paid $400,000 for son in U.S. college bribery scam

Xiaoning Sui, 48, was arrested in Spain on Monday night

A Surrey mother has been charged in connection to the U.S. college bribery scandal, marking the second parent from B.C. to be accused of paying money to a university or college in exchange for their child’s admission.

Xiaoning Sui, 48, was arrested in Spain on Monday night, according to the U.S. attorney in Massachusetts.

She is charged with one count of conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud. Sui is currently detained in Spain, and authorities will be seeking her extradition to Boston to face the charge.

According to court documents unsealed in Boston Monday, Sui allegedly paid $400,000 to William “Rock” Singer in 2018, in order to have her son admitted to UCLA as a soccer recruit. Evidence includes phone calls beginning in August 2018 where Singer, a Newport Beach college consultant, allegedly told Sui she would be “guaranteed” admission into the university in exchange for the large sum of money.

Co-conspirator Laura Janke, who already pleaded guilty to her role in the scam, then fabricated a soccer profile for Sui’s son, which described him as a top player for two private soccer clubs in Canada.

Sui wired $100,000 to a Massachusetts bank account in the name of Singer’s sham charitable organization in October 2018, the court documents allege. Shortly after, Su’s son was admitted to the university as a soccer player on a 25 per cent scholarship.

ALSO READ:Accused test-taker pleads guilty in college bribery scandal involving B.C. businessman

Sui allegedly wired another $300,000 to the same account in January 2019. If convicted, conspiracy to commit mail fraud and honest services mail fraud carries a maximum sentence of 20 years in prison, and a fine of $250,000.

Sui is the 52nd person to be indicted for allegedly using bribery or other forms of fraud, including celebrities like Lori Laughlin, who pleaded not guilty and is awaiting trial, as well as Felicity Huffman who was sentenced last week to 14 days behind bars and a $30,000 fine.

Meanwhile, Singer pleaded guilty in March to helping bribe university sports coaches to present clients’ children as fake athletic recruits. His sentencing is set for later this month.

Jorge Salcedo, the UCLA men’s soccer coach, who has also been charged with racketeering conspiracy in connection to the scheme, pleaded not guilty.

The only other B.C. defendant in the case so far, former CFL player David Sidoo, pleaded not guilty after being charged in March with conspiracy to commit mail and wire fraud. It’s alleged he paid $200,000 in total for someone to take an entrance exam on behalf of both his sons, and that he also paid an undisclosed amount for someone to fly to Vancouver and take a high school test.

READ MORE: B.C. businessman David Sidoo pleads not guilty in U.S. college bribery case


@ashwadhwani
ashley.wadhwani@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

LETTERS TO THE EDITOR: Improved health and social services needed

It’s imperative that the root systemic causes of homelessness are addressed, say letter writers

Province providing financing to help get apartments built in Nanaimo’s Wellington area

120 apartments on Ledgerwood Road intended to be affordable for ‘middle-income’ households

‘Someone knows something’: a look into Vancouver Island missing persons with interactive map

There are more than three dozen people listed as missing throughout Vancouver Island

Regional District of Nanaimo to start delivering new garbage carts

Updated automated curbside collection service set to get underway Oct. 1

Nanaimo RCMP want speeding motorists to ‘slow the blazes down’

Police raise alarm after seeing 400-per cent rise in excessive speeding tickets last month

Islanders want BC Ferries to follow order that lets residents board before tourists

For ferry-dependent communities, ferries are often the sole practical lifeline to work, school or medical appointments.

Departure Bay ferry capacity increases to 70%, says B.C. Ferries

Fifty-per-cent limit being phased out, B.C. Ferries has no current plans to provide masks

Beverly Hills 90210 star’s family selling Vancouver Island Beach Resort

You can own Jason Priestley’s Terrace Beach Resort in Ucluelet for less than $5 million

Outreach team making connections with young people experiencing homelessness in Nanaimo

Nanaimo Aboriginal Centre youth advisory council initiative offers ‘no-barrier’ help downtown

Genetic detectives begin work to trace spread of COVID-19 in Canada

The kinds of genetic technology being used for this project did not exist when SARS hit Canada in 2003

Sports fishers protest Fraser River Chinook closures

Public Fishery Alliance wants hatchery fish open for harvest

Shellfish industry get funds to clean up at Island sites and beyond

Businesses can apply to cover half of costs to clean up so-called ‘ghost gear’

Amber Alert for two Quebec girls cancelled after bodies found

Romy Carpentier, 6, Norah Carpentier, 11, and their father, Martin Carpentier, missing since Wednesday

Most Read